|Date||Time||League||Season||Attendance||Dover Star Player||Home Scorers|
|26th December 2019||3:00 pm||National League||2019-2020||1,210||Ricky Modeste||Modeste (24), De Havilland (29) Effiong (75)|
Whites’ fans were given a belated Christmas present as Andy Hessenthaler’s men convincingly beat National League title challengers Bromley at Crabble on Boxing Day.
In soaking conditions, Ricky Modeste and Will De Havilland had Dover two goals ahead at the break, with Inih Effiong adding gloss to the scoreline with a cool finish in the second half.
The victory ended a winless league run of four matches for Dover as Athletic moved up four places to 12th in the table.
Earlier, Michael Woods’ sliding pass found Modeste well-placed at the back post, however Athletic’s winger scuffed wide.
Effiong was then denied by Ryan Huddart.
Whites’ striker was played in by Modeste, but Bromley’s goalie saved well with his legs.
Oscar Gobern, making his first appearance since the 4-3 home loss to Maidenhead in November, sprinted onto Bobby-Joe Taylor’s corner, but placed his back-post header wide of the mark.
Luke Coulson then curled Adam Mekki’s cross over.
Dover then took the lead in comical circumstances.
Gobern released Woods and the midfielder rolled the ball towards goal, however the ball stopped just before the goal line.
Thankfully for the hosts, Modeste was quickest to react, sliding home his fifth goal of the season.
Athletic then looked to set to end a run of three home league games without defeat by doubling their lead.
De Havilland headed Taylor’s corner into the net off the unfortunate Sam Wood on the goal line, with the Ravens defender unable to adjust his feet quickly enough.
Josh Passley then nearly had a heart-in-mouth moment when he directing a pass-back away from Worgan, but Athletic’s keeper scampered across his goalline line to rescue his teammate.
Huddart then plucked out Effiong’s header from Modeste’s pinpoint cross.
At Dover’s top scorer Effiong and Huddart would clash again moments later.
Both players went for a 50-50 challenge and with each man making contact, the ball spun away to a nearby Bromley defender.
Following the restart, Michael Cheek missed a golden chance to reduce the arrears.
The forward, currently on ten league goals for the campaign, look set to claim his 11th goal of the season, but completely miss-kicked when Ben Williamson’s ball landed at his feet.
Effiong then nearly scored a spectacular goal after running with the ball from his own half, but Huddart tipped his curling shot away for a corner.
The away side nearly found a way back into the game following a goalmouth scramble.
A corner from the left bounced around the penalty area, but substitute Josh Rees smashed the ball wide after at least two Dover players had cleared the ball off the line.
Dominant Dover then went close again as Jack Munns fired wide of the mark and at the other end, Worgan dived to palm away sub Andre Coker’s shot.
But the home team made the game save thanks to Effiong’s 11th goal of the season.
The burly forward dispossessed Jack Holland as Bromley’s captain tried to defend a long ball, before rounding Huddart and slotting into an empty net.
Sub Steven Rigg almost added a fourth when slotting wide from the edge of the box, but Whites’ held on to give their fans some much needed festive cheer in the biggest home win of the campaign so far.
Earlier, boss Hessenthaler made four changes to the side that started at Chorley on Saturday. Munns, Taylor, Gobern and L’Ghoul came in for Jai Reason, Aaron Simpson, Paul Rooney and Anthony Jeffrey.
Whites next travel to Ebbsfleet United on Saturday 28th December, kick-off 3 pm.
DOVER ATHLETIC REACTION
|Referee||Referee's Assistants||Fourth Official|
|Gary Parsons||Christoper Myatt|
|Crabble Athletic Ground|
|40 Crabble Rd, Dover, Kent CT17 0QJ, UK|